Article by Dr Khandee Ahnaimugan MBChB MMed
Here are 8 tips for losing weight that don’t involve dieting or deprivation.
1. Small changes.
When most people think of losing weight, they think of throwing everything in their fridge in the rubbish and following some food plan that is the complete opposite to their usual menu.
Is this really likely to lead to long-term weight loss? Of course not. Instead of drastic changes, make small ones. Why not try cutting back your portion sizes by 10%? Keep focussed on small changes that you know you can live with. That’s the key to long-term success.
2. Understand the truth about exercise.
Don’t be surprised, upset or angry that despite sweating it out at the gym several times a week, your weight isn’t falling. For women over 50, exercise alone is NOT enough to control your weight. Your success lies in finding ways to eat (and drink) fewer calories.
Something to keep in mind is that it will probably take longer to lose the weight than you expected. This is partly related to the unrealistic expectations most people have about how fast they can lose weight.Is this a bad thing? Let me put it another way: Is there any point losing weight quickly if you just gain it back again (most people’s experience).
If you are ok with it taking longer you’ll be able to cope with the inevitable hiccups along the way. This is crucial.
Get support from family and friends
6. Get others on board.
Sometimes partners, family or friends can unintentionally make things difficult for you. Examples include offering tempting food to you, ordering a bottle of wine to share when you wanted a night off drinking, or questioning you when you say you’ve had enough (“Are you sure you don’t want any more?”).
Be aware that others might be undermining your progress and protect yourself against it, either by speaking to them about it, or planning how to counteract them.
7. Control your environment.
If you are constantly surrounded by food and you don’t have a plan for dealing with it, then you will struggle to lose weight and keep it off. And in this day and age, we are all constantly surrounded by food.
A good example is people who keep food on their desk at work. When it’s staring out at you like that, you will eventually eat it. Remember, it’s a lot harder to eat things that aren’t there.
8. Be prepared for trouble along the way.
Most diets have a “stick to this perfectly or this wont work” philosophy. But this is ludicrous. You will make mistakes along the way. There will be a bad week or bad weekend somewhere along the line.
Instead of treating this as a disaster and giving up (which is what most people do), learn from the mistake and keep going.
A Different Approach
The typical diet revolves around drastic overhauls, deprivation and sticking to the plan perfectly. You don’t need any of these things. Just make small changes each week, adding more and more changes, refining your approach along the way, and persisting until you reach your goal. It’s a long-term focussed approach and it is the recipe for weight loss success.